CHICAGO, IL –The National Partnership for New Americans (NPNA) Board welcomes former Congressman Luis Gutiérrez (D-IL), who announced today in a video posted to his social media accounts the official commencement of his work as Senior Policy Advisor to the National Partnership for New Americans (NPNA) following his departure from Congress last week. Gutiérrez also began his new role as Political Commentator at CNN this week.
As part of his position as Senior Policy Advisor, Gutiérrez will be traveling across the nation promoting the New American Dreams Platform. The former U.S. Representative outlined the main goals of the Platform in his video announcement, stating, “Progress requires working together with decent people on solutions for New Americans that are good for all Americans. Simple ideas like supporting immigrants to become citizens, and to learn English so they can advance at work and talk to their neighbors. Simple ideas like decent people reaching out and supporting refugees and the women and children seeking asylum at our shores and building upon our shared prosperity.”
Gutiérrez served Illinois’ 4th Congressional District for 26 years and is one of the state’s longest-serving members of the House. Since his early days in Congress, Gutiérrez has been a relentless advocate of the immigrant and Puerto Rican communities across the nation, as well as an outspoken advocate of workers’ rights, LGBTQ rights, and gender equality.
One of the priorities of the New American Dreams Platform is increasing the submission of citizenship applications within immigrant communities and eliminating barriers to obtaining citizenship in order to gain one million more voters in 2020. Gutiérrez spoke about the “second wall” consisting of the enormous backlog of citizenship applications during his first appearance as Political Commentator on CNN, stating, “I’m going to be traveling around the country tearing down a wall that has actually been built. There are one million green card holders that have applied for American citizenship. This administration now is at 20 months, they’re trapped.” He went on to say, “This is a process that is totally paid for by the immigrant. . . It shouldn’t be taking that long, it’s a million people who want to vote. So the National Partnership for New Americans, I’m going to be working with them traveling around the country doing a lot of what I did without the restraints of having to show up in Congress and vote.”
The former congressman first announced his new role in December at the NPNA-sponsored National Immigrant Integration Conference (NIIC), the largest conference on immigration and immigrant integration in the United States. In an impassioned speech, the then-Congressman stated, “I am not going to go away and be quiet. I am joining you in every city, and state and community. As I have said many times nothing changes inside the Capitol unless there is persistent and consistent pressure from outside the Capitol. So I am going to stand with you as we move an ambitious agenda forward and push for change in Washington and in communities large and small across the country.” Gutiérrez will be serving as Senior Policy Advisor for NPNA along with former U.S. Senator Bob Dole (R-KS).